Salvation Army Provides Emergency Services in Australia

Salvation Army personnel offer ongoing assistance in flood-hit regions of Queensland and New South Wales

February 22, 2012 by Simone Worthing


In the Australian states of Queensland and New South Wales, devastating floods have affected large areas, stranding hundreds of people and causing widespread destruction and loss. In Queensland, The Salvation Army is supporting those stranded by floodwaters as well as emergency services personnel and volunteers, while in northern New South Wales Salvation Army teams and personnel are helping with the clean-up operation.

A Salvation Army volunteer distributes clothing and blankets to a flood victim (Photo: Shairon Paterson)

In New South Wales the flooding began on 2 February. In the town of Moree, a Salvation Army Emergency Services team responded immediately, serving hundreds of meals at an evacuation centre to evacuees, state emergency services crews and others for several days.

In Queensland, the hardest-hit towns were St George, Roma, Dalby, Mitchell and Charleville.

On Sunday, February 5, Salvation Army Emergency Services crews from Dalby, Caboolture and the Gold Coast were flown in an Australian Defence Service Chinook helicopter to Mitchell, where they served hundreds of meals at an evacuation centre. Captain Mark Bulow (Salvation Army Outback Flying Service Pilot and corps officer at Dalby) also flew the service’s helicopter to Mitchell, bringing essential supplies for the centre.

Salvation Army volunteers served meals at an evacuation centre in St George until most of the town was evacuated to a safer area. A team also flew to Charleville and served hundreds of breakfasts and lunches at the evacuation centre.

An evacuation centre at the RNA Showgrounds in the Queensland capital, Brisbane, catered for those arriving from inland areas. Salvation Army teams served meals and assisted with urgent needs.

Salvation Army Emergency Services personnel help with the flood clean-up (Photo: Shairon Paterson)

As the floodwaters recede, Salvation Army personnel and volunteers are helping residents as they assess the damage and start cleaning up their homes. “The situation in the evacuation centre is starting to ease but much needs to be done as the recovery process begins,” says Norm Archer, Salvation Army Emergency Services Director for the Australia Eastern Territory.

“Support will be needed for some time,” adds Captain Chris Shadbolt (corps officer, Moree). “Once people head home and see the damage, that’s when the emotional things start to kick in. We want to let the community know we are still here—even when the clean-up is over.”

It’s not all bad news. Captain Bulow is aware that, as water levels lower throughout the state, people’s spirits are lifting. “A lot of people are getting back to some sort of normality,” he says. “Some are getting payments through so they can start purchasing food and necessities instead of coming to the evacuation centres for help.”

In Roma, the clean-up has begun and Salvation Army personnel and volunteers are continuing to offer assistance. Norm Archer affirms: “We’ll continue to support every affected community as long as we are needed.”

Speak Your Mind

*

Prepare the Way

Prepare the Way

Recovering the spirit of Lent.

Journey to Forgetfulness

Journey to Forgetfulness

When a loved one has Alzheimer’s, the diagnosis affects the entire family.

Opinion & Critical Thought

It’s All About That Grace

It’s All About That Grace

How our eighth doctrine contributes to an attitude of gratitude.

Book Review: Hidden Treasure

Book Review: Hidden Treasure

Hidden Treasure is a long-overdue exploration of the role of women officers in The Salvation Army.

Territorial News

Oshawa Temple Hosts YP Music Festival

Oshawa Temple Hosts YP Music Festival

YP bands, choirs and timbrel brigade from Ontario Central-East Division gather for annual event.

Territorial Commander Makes First Visit to Alberta

Territorial Commander Makes First Visit to Alberta

Tour includes stops in Calgary and Edmonton.

International News

International Day of Prayer for Children 2015 Resources Now Available

International Day of Prayer for Children 2015 Resources Now Available

Annual day of prayer to take place on March 29.

150 Days until The Salvation Army’s 150th Anniversary

150 Days until The Salvation Army’s 150th Anniversary

March of witness along The Mall confirmed as the culmination of the celebrations.

Faith & Friends

Full Circle

Full Circle

Just when I thought I’d lost everything—faith, livelihood, a future—I found The Salvation Army.

Project Self-Esteem

Project Self-Esteem

With their own version of an extreme makeover, a Salvation Army program in Ottawa helps men feel good about themselves again.